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A Private View of a Private View

A lot has been running through my mind - a lot of frustrations, anxieties, concerns and nerves because this installation hasn't been set up before. This means it hasn't been checked. It's the first time the poles have been brought in to be put into place so I can see them together, and they don't quite stand straight and as well as the way they lean, they're a little too tall and I'm not sure how they look without the paint, so I've used the old Room Full of Memories installation from 2004 just as a temporary measure to show it works. For the first time, I've put the fabrics up and it's been quite powerful for me to reflect on how the piece describes women's experiences of the marriage process, so making sure I'm doing that right is a challenge.

The private view tonight means the studio needs to be meticulously clean and well prepared for the guests and without even a single mistake. Today, though, has been an incredible challenge because when I needed to put my work out of the way, we stored it on a new shelf and then went away for lunch. When we came back, the shelf had collapsed and my paintings had fallen everywhere - it was a catastrophe! Once I'd managed to calm down from the shock, I got our technician out to make repairs to the shelf to make sure it was all a bit more secure and only then could I focus on getting the installation ready and place the silks, so it was quite a challenge - and a worry; I wasn't sure I'd get everything together in time. We only have about thirty minutes left before the public arrive and we still need to put out information for people. I hope it works out okay!

A lot of people aren't exactly clear about what the installation I'm trying to build exactly is, but I'm trying to achieve something that shows three key moments in a woman's experience of a traditional Muslim wedding. It's an interesting challenge, but here's how the bases are built, they have to be strong to hold the pipes, which are copper - a little crooked, which we have to correct, so the head piece placed on top holds the fabric, but before that goes on it'll need painting. Let's look inside. It's like the girl, getting prepared for the wedding. It's the first part of the process. Then... The second part's this one - no, sorry, that one! After the wedding - this is heavy, the family's giving away everything and saying goodbye to their daughter. Then... Through to this one, the woman's finally married and has met her husband and begun her new life with him, it's calmer...

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